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Subject: Home Economics Film Interests
Learning about the home is very important in the 1950's.
The girls and college administraters are very busy seeing to those teachings. Learning how to use and enjoy a home at the most economical effort. Building adult relationships as well as knowledge is important. Just because the girls leave home and go to college for HE in the 1950's means a sacrifice for their parents. This is an excellent film. It shows a teenager about college, and family.
Subject: A girl's opportunity to attend college
A high school girls interest in home economics becomes a way for her to legitimize her desire to attend college. Its easy to ridicule these films, but underneath all their corny imagery we can see how hard it was for girls to have any real educational opportunities after high school. At the time this film was made, many parents didnt see the need for their daughters to attend college. Would Kay, the girl in this film, be allowed to go to college at all if she wasnt majoring in Home Economics? Probably not. I particularly liked the scenes with Kay and her parents poring over the college application. Kay could be the first in her family to go to college and the voice-over reminds us, College for Kay would mean sacrifices for Mom and Dad. Would it be worth the sacrifice? When Kays college acceptance letter comes in the mail, her mother, humbly wiping her hands on her apron, is standing at her side. Kay has an chance for a larger life that her mother was denied.
Subject: Meanwhile, in another universe..
Very whopper laden tale of four girls taking HoemEconomics at college. If you thought HE was just textiles and food, well you're WRONG1 It also includes Physics! and Chemistry1 The narrator is quick to point our however, that all of this can be tied in with house work.As a matter of fact, some people take the HE courses in college for a career as being a house wife! Oh brother. Very strange, badly edited and highly reccomended!
The film isn't terribly interesting as an ISU recruiting film. But the dated social stereotypes are amusing. Mystery Science Theater 3000 spoofed this film at some point and it's a riot.
Christine Hennig -
Subject: The Home Economics Story (Full Film)
I have a special affection for this film, meant to encourage 40's teenage girls to study home economics at Iowa State College. Since it's for both the girls and their parents, it tries to make college life look like a swell time while reassuring the parents that it will properly train their daughters to assume their proper roles as wives and mothers. There's a large implication that convincing parents to spend money on college for girls will be a tough sell. They don't make 'em like this anymore (thank goodness!).
Ratings: Camp/Humor Value: *****. Weirdness: ***. Historical Interest: *****. Overall Rating: *****. Also available on Mystery Science Theater 3000, Epsode #317: Viking Women vs. the Sea Serpent.